Getting Along with the Libraries

The very first time that you open File Explorer which is Windows 8’s version of Windows Explorer, you will notice a number of default folders at the left navigation pane which includes the Favorites, Desktop, Downloads, Recent Places, Documents, Music, Pictures and Videos folder. Why are these folders located in this place and why does a new Windows computer already have files stored on some of them?

The answer is very simple. These folders are placed there by default so you can have a place to go to whenever you download or transfer pictures, music, videos and documents either from the Internet or from another device. For instance, when you download a picture from the Internet, the default place where it is saved into is the “Downloads” folder and when you take a picture using your computer’s webcam, you will find it saved in the “Pictures” folder. These folders are actually called “Libraries” and these are part of Microsoft’s way in helping you organize your content. Sounds great right? Well, that’s not everything yet, in this tutorial, I will be giving you some tips that you can apply to make these libraries look more personalized and make them serve your purpose so get yourself and your Windows 8 machine ready to follow the tips that I will be showing below.

1. Add a New Folder to the Favorites Section

Just because the default folders are already in the navigation pane doesn’t mean you can’t add more folders to it. You can actually add another folder to the “Favorites” section of the File Explorer’s navigation pane. It may sound complicated but the steps required is very simple.


2. Hide a Library from the Navigation Pane

You can see the “Libraries” section right below the “Favorites” but it can sometimes look crowded with some stuff that you don’t’ even need. To hide a certain library, simply click on “Libraries” to open its main screen then right-click on the item that you want to hide.


3. Restore Accidentally Deleted Libraries

In the process of organizing things within the Favorites and the Libraries section, it can’t be avoided that one of the items would be deleted accidentally. When this happens, you need to browse for the deleted Library from the Recycle Bin and once you find it, simply right-click on it the click on the the “Restore” option. Another way of doing this is by right clicking on “Libraries” from the left navigation pane then hit “Restore default libraries”.


4. Add a New Library Manually

You can actually add a new library by using another method different from the one I gave earlier. Simply click on the “Libraries” link again from the left navigation pane and on the Libraries Window, simply right-click on an empty space then point the mouse on to the “New” option and on the menu that appears, hit “Library”. After doing so, you need to open it up and link it to a new folder.

5. Optimize a Library for Certain File Types

How your new library looks like depends on the contents that you set it for however, you can make this more specific by tweaking its settings. Simply click on the “Library” link again from the left navigation pane then from the list of libraries that appears on the Window, simply click on the new library which you created.You can actually optimize a library for different types of files like Pictures, Videos, Music, Documents and General items.


6. Changing the Icon

The icon that is set for the new library you created does not have to remain on its default settings. Yes! You can actually change the icon to whatever type you wish. To do this, you would need to open the main library Window again by clicking on the “Libraries” link found on the navigation pane at the left side of the Window. Once the “Libraries” Window opens, simply click on the one that you created then at the top of the Window, hit “Manage”. You  will then see more options below the tabs where the “Manage” button is found. From these options, simply look for the one that says “Change icon”.


Organize All Your Stuff with Libraries

All the Libraries and other Folders that you see on the navigation pane at the left of the File Explorer Window are not just there to make spaces look occupied. They are all tools that will help you organize your contents in properly labeled and well classified folders. If you accidentally delete a library, all of the contents that are linked to it will not be affected.  The library only serves as a virtual representation of the overall group of files that you stored in it. Take some time to explore the Libraries and Favorites section on the File Explorer feature of Windows and discover more tweaks and settings that you never thought existed. Do you have questions about the Libraries in Windows 8 or are you having problems with any other feature on your computer? We at windowstechies.loc are always ready to help, just leave a comment below which describes the problem that you are experiencing and we’ll do our best to get back to you at the soonest time possible.